as of February 2019
WHEREAS the interests of the Democrats Abroad organization are best served when guided by the diverse and representative voices of our membership;
WHEREAS in-person participation is critical to making one’s voice heard;
WHEREAS many active members cannot participate in person due to the high cost of attending international meetings;
BE IT RESOLVED that the Democratic Party Committee Abroad (DPCA) set up an internal travel fund for those DPCA members with demonstrable need and proven commitment to the organization;
AND LET IT BE FURTHER RESOLVED that the International Chairperson, in consultation with the International Treasurer and the DPCA Executive Committee, will set the amount of such stipend;
AND LET IT BE FURTHER RESOLVED that the International Chairperson will appoint a committee to design and implement a transparent mechanism to request and accept applications for the stipend in a timely manner and with a preference for a registration contribution on a voluntary basis.
Contributions to the DPCA Travel Fund shall be considered to be ordinary donations to the DPCA. Thus, contributions to the Travel Fund must be governed by the usual laws and regulations (e.g. from US citizens only, at least 18 years old, not anonymous, not in excess of campaign limits).
The Travel Fund does not require a separate bank account. It is sufficient that the International Treasurer keep a separate accounting of donations to, and disbursements from, the Travel Fund. The International Treasurer should give a separate report to DPCA members on the financial status and activities of the Travel Fund.
The DPCA Executive Committee may not authorize disbursements from the Travel Fund for any purpose other than Travel Fund Awards, as described below, except as follows: The DPCA Executive Committee may make a one-time disbursement from the Travel Fund for an emergency purpose, by unanimous vote of the Executive Committee, and with timely notice to all DPCA members and prominence in the International Treasurer’s annual report.
The International Treasurer establishes and maintains the means of accepting donations to the Travel Fund. The International Chair has responsibility (which may be delegated) for promoting both voluntary contributions to the Travel Fund and the process of applying for Travel Fund Awards.
Timing Proposal: The International Chair should appoint a Travel Fund Committee of at least one Chair and at least one member from each of the three regions by January 1 of each year. By February 1 or ninety days before the next in-person meeting of the DPCA (whichever is sooner), the International Treasurer should inform the chair of the Travel Fund Committee of the amount of funds available in the Travel Fund. The Travel Fund Committee should work with the International Chair so that a detailed description of the awards available and the application procedure are available no later than the date that registration is opened for the DPCA meeting.
The purpose of Travel Fund awards is to provide partial, but not total, financial assistance for members to attend DPCA Global Meetings in person. Awards of $500 will be distributed to selected applicants to help offset their out-of-pocket costs.
Awards will not be granted for attendance at Regional Meetings or the Democratic National Convention.
Eligibility: All DPCA members (both voting and non-voting) in good standing are eligible to apply for Travel Fund Awards. Individuals who have received a Travel Fund Award in the previous five (5) DPCA Global Meetings are not eligible to apply.
Application: An applicant must complete and submit an application form, which shall be provided by the Travel Fund Committee on the DPCA website. Information to be supplied by the applicant will include, but will not be limited to, a two-paragraph statement from the applicant detailing the applicant’s past and present involvement with DPCA at the chapter, country committee, and international levels, and describing the vision of the applicant’s future roles within DPCA.
Determination of Need: The applicant must give an indication on the application form of genuine financial need. No personal financial information will be collected by the Committee. The applicant must also provide an estimate of travel costs to the Global Meeting, to exclude lodging and miscellaneous expenditures.
Determination of Underrepresentation at Global Meetings: The applicant must provide information about the home Country Committee’s attendance at past Global Meetings and the applicant’s own history of attendance at past Global Meetings.
Sensitivity to Diversity: The applicant may voluntarily provide information to assist the Committee in meeting affirmative action and gender balance goals, in line with recommendations established by the Diversity Committee. Diversity information will not be used as a primary factor in evaluating applications but will be used by the Chair as a tie-breaker in the event two applications are ranked the same.
Endorsements and Letters of Reference: Applicants who are not serving in elected positions within the DPCA at either the international, country committee, or chapter level must provide a letter of reference from an elected DPCA member at the time of application.
Conditions of the Award: Travel Fund Awards will be granted to recipients by the International Treasurer at the DPCA Global Meeting as reimbursement to ensure that the recipients are physically present at the meeting. Recipients are required to provide travel-related receipts to the Travel Fund Committee Chair and International Treasurer no later than two weeks in advance of the DPCA Global Meeting. Recipients are required to attend, in person, the DPCA Global Meeting in its entirety. Failure to attend the meeting in full, absent a genuine and verifiable emergency, will result in forfeiture of the Award. Awards will not be prorated for partial meeting attendance.
The Chair of the Travel Fund Committee shall submit a written report to each in-person DPCA meeting, including: